24

Deposited, p12

March 16, 2022 by Tim

Last year I started a series of Console War prints, each focusing on a different generation of gaming (we are currently on the ninth generation of home gaming consoles!).

Wave Two is finally up for preorder, and features the second three prints (generations 4,5 and 6) in the series. Like last time, the prints will be 17×11, big enough to enjoy the art, but not so big you couldn’t decorate your gaming room with a few of them (*nudge nudge*). The prints will be $10 a piece, or $25 for the set of three. All Wave Two pre-ordered prints will be hand-signed by me, and are expected to ship in late April.

I’m also making Wave One available for purchase. These will ship in late April as well, but will not be signed (that was a bonus for the original pre-order only).

Orders will be open for two weeks.


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TOZ
TOZ
8 months ago

Bet Scott wishes he had asked himself the question “what if the failsafe doesn’t work?”

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  TOZ

Dang! Needed a bigger bomb.

jack
jack
8 months ago
Reply to  TOZ

ethan was always better at those anyway.

Failsafe – Ctrl+Alt+Del Comic Ctrl+Alt+Del (cad-comic.com)

CWolfxUK
CWolfxUK
8 months ago

Scott is in trouble now…
It is unfortunate that the recording appears to be the last thing Ethan said – I do hope They do have more in there! Either way, I think Scott is in for it.

Tim, this story is an epic!

Last edited 8 months ago by CWolfxUK
wnstnchng
wnstnchng
8 months ago
Reply to  CWolfxUK

Ethan will block the death blow, then die and get Zeke back to normal, then respawn. Just my guess. 🙂

Andrew
Andrew
8 months ago
Reply to  wnstnchng

I hope they get Zeke back to normal 🙁

DontBeThatGuy
DontBeThatGuy
8 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

They will. Just gonna be some repercussions getting there is all.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  CWolfxUK

On the one hand, Scott’s choice was the only sane one. On the other hand, if Zeke murders him for trying to murder them, then that’s kind of understandable. On the other hand, if a murderbot kills a human, society will hunt him until he is wiped from the planet. On the yet another hand, if Zeke kills Scott, even if he deserves it, Scott and Lucas were right to believe he could not go beyond his programming and the only thing Scott did wrong was not using a big enough charge. Nice mess, Tim! It’s a sign of a… Read more »

vaisravana
vaisravana
8 months ago
Reply to  TomB

Dunno why you get downvoted…anyway..I don’t think Scott’s decision was sane..understandable, yes, but ethically highly questionable. Ofc the stnding of a sentient robot in itself is an issue, but ignoring that, as I stated previously – every human being is a potential threat to other human beings. Our world is filled to the brim with man made creations that could pose a very real existential threat. I wouldn’t exactly consider it to be *sane* to put a kill switch on a being because it could pose a *potential* danger. Now in this case it wasn’t all black and white since… Read more »

MRD
MRD
8 months ago
Reply to  vaisravana

I think Scott is the only sane one of the bunch. A homicidal robot in your house that you have no good way of stopping?

PhobosRising
PhobosRising
8 months ago
Reply to  MRD

We call that a “Toaster” in some circles.

The Legacy
The Legacy
8 months ago
Reply to  TomB

To be fair, the size of the explosion wasn’t his fault; that was the master’s. Where he DID go wrong was not taking the time to verify the numbers to ensure that the explosive would be enough, and – as ANY good coder would say – the parameters of the activation. As someone who has done professional QA, it was my job to try to break the parameters and code that the programmers wrote. I know Scott is supposed to be quite brilliant in this comic, so I would imagine he should have been able to add secondary parameters, such… Read more »

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
8 months ago
Reply to  The Legacy

I don’t see really your point about Scott being wrong on the explosion qualities. It’s not like the bomb accidentally went off, or at a moment it shouldn’t have. The system worked exactly as intended: Robot left room, robot went boom, and no secondary damage or casualties. (If the explosive had done its job that is). You’re right that Scott probably could’ve added additional parameters, but why should he have done that? Those would’ve only made the system less effective at its intended purpose, automatically stopping a potential homicidal Zeke as soon as possible to prevent any harm. Not detonating… Read more »

The Legacy
The Legacy
8 months ago
Reply to  GeorgeV

Still, I was going on the assumption that Scott as a superhero in his own right. He might be a mere mortal, but I was assuming he had a super intellect of some kind.

As for the failsafe, my point was he could have installed an unstoppable countdown, but could otherwise be paused using a remote device. I’m sure if got installed a separate Wireless to control the explosive, using very old wireless technology that is undetectable with modern Wireless, it might just work.

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
8 months ago
Reply to  The Legacy

I agree that the technology to add such features should be there (and within Scotts capabilities), I just don’t see a good reason why Scott should’ve added them. One of scenarios Scott is trying to prevent is a homicidal robot just walking out and and/or starting to kill people. For that to work you need the failsafe to kick in as soon as possible. If ZK does go berserk and begins to snap someone’s spine, you don’t want to wait 60 seconds* before the failsafe kicks in, for example. That just gives the robot time to get at least one… Read more »

Paradox
Paradox
2 months ago
Reply to  TomB

Scott’s decisions have been as sane as passing legislation that all dogs of a certain breed must be euthanized as dangerous, or shooting a large black man because you were afraid of him.

wkz
wkz
8 months ago

Paraphrased: “I do not feel safe, so I must kill that which makes me feel not safe”

Given what was said earlier, there’s quite the ironic tones to this…

Kelibath
Kelibath
8 months ago
Reply to  wkz

It’s an interesting parallel, that’s for sure.

But I think the key difference is that while the humans did not feel safe, for fair reason, they may well have actually been safe. Whereas patently Zeke was actually not safe.

Last edited 8 months ago by Kelibath
Jon
Jon
8 months ago
Reply to  Kelibath

I would only argue that paranoia and what you fear COULD happen are not fair reasons. So I don’t think that Scott or Lucas were acting reasonably.

Understandable reasons perhaps, but not acceptable or fair.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  Jon

I disagree. If Zeke had harmed anyone and the heroes had it to stop him but did not do so, then they were at least culpably negligent because they never called the authorities. And the law, unless Tim says otherwise but hasn’t yet, does not treat seemingly sentient automata as being equal under the law to a person. He is more than likely a possession and more than likely considered a public menace and a lethal weapon. Further, there’s no way that anyone can know that Zeke’s kills in the past were not at least partly his culpability. He could… Read more »

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  TomB

And of course, if I’m right about them not wanting to grant him the same standing under the law as a human, for reasons good or otherwise, they would never get a court date. There would not even be charges. He’d just be dismantled or shut down and broken up like guns that have been used in crimes. They’d go to the breakers. Of course, if the government (vs. the courts) got ahold of him, he’d go into some black site until the gov’t could control him for their use as killbot. But that’d be legit because it would be… Read more »

GUNnibal
GUNnibal
8 months ago

Looks like this might be a throwback to the time when Ethan 1.0 was forced to choose between ZK and his close ones.

Last edited 8 months ago by GUNnibal
John Swift
John Swift
8 months ago
Reply to  GUNnibal

I dono, maybe. It could eaisly be building there within a page or two.
That last panel tho, finally showing us the damage from a good angle. Scott seems oddly prepared. Im guessing he has something else ready, doubt he is simply ready to die.

Robfather
Robfather
8 months ago
Reply to  John Swift

I would assume that as the tech guy for a pair of superheroes, he probably has some tech of his own for protection.

Evan Rawson
Evan Rawson
8 months ago
Reply to  GUNnibal

First off, how dare you remind us of the simpler times of 2005.

Urainkhali
Urainkhali
8 months ago

Quite thrilling so far.

Kevin Greenbaum
Kevin Greenbaum
8 months ago

Lucas might use his arrows to take Zeke’s arms and legs off, they can repair him with parts from the thumb drive. Unfortunately they flew way farther than square one in terms of trust, unless they can fix his processors and explain mistakes were made, but that’d be a very tough sell.

Merida
Merida
8 months ago

Him getting to wake up again with the head fixed wold probably be a good first step proof of regret or intention of non-permanent harm.

Merida
Merida
8 months ago
Reply to  Merida

*ee

jack
jack
8 months ago

i’m wondering if this isnt going to end up with ethan offering himself in some fashion, and zeke flashbacking to the conversation they had about “it hurts every time”

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
8 months ago

I feel like the first few pages of this storyline is foreshadowing where this is suddenly going to go…

James
James
8 months ago

I honestly think ZK would be entirely justified in killing at least Scott, given it was Scott who just tried to straight murder them.

Doom
Doom
8 months ago
Reply to  James

Hasn’t Zeke been taught by Ethan that restitution is more deeply satisfying than revenge once already in this arc?

And Scott is probably the only one there with half a chance of doing internal repairs on Zeke

That is, if Zeke can be held or talked down long enough to be repaired without pulling Scott’s arms and legs off for attemping murder

Swiftbow
Swiftbow
8 months ago
Reply to  Doom

His processor (ie. brain) is damaged. He can’t think rationally. (He even said so.) Being held down or disabling him is probably the only viable option to stop him here.

lechuckGL
lechuckGL
8 months ago
Reply to  Swiftbow

He said he cannot talk properly, but it seems that he is thinking very rationally…or at least as rationally as a scared of his life person can think

Swiftbow
Swiftbow
8 months ago
Reply to  lechuckGL

He specifically says “can’t-an’t think straightline”

It’s hard to see that as anything other than him explaining that he has an inability to think normally.

wkz
wkz
8 months ago
Reply to  lechuckGL

And a person scared of his life will be using the “animal” part of his brain.

Someone backed into a corner would not be thinking logically, even towards the rescuer who just showed up, defeated any aggressors, and is extending a hand towards him…

Wesley Riot
Wesley Riot
8 months ago
Reply to  James

zeke is a talking computer

Amy
Amy
8 months ago
Reply to  Wesley Riot

I think you may have missed the entire point of this chapter. And the last few. And, really, at least half of the entire comic.

Peosea
Peosea
8 months ago
Reply to  Wesley Riot

You might want to watch this before calling Zeke a “talking computer”

Peosea
Peosea
8 months ago
Reply to  Wesley Riot

Sorry. Forgot to share the link:

https://youtu.be/HN3HBjHkm5o

Freddie
Freddie
8 months ago
Reply to  Peosea

Thank you for not rickrolling.

Skull the Troll
Skull the Troll
8 months ago
Reply to  Wesley Riot

And you and I are talking apes. What’s your point?

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
8 months ago

Primates, at least; I don’t recall how far back the common ancestor which humans and trolls share is. Never paid much attention in Biology.

Last edited 8 months ago by Eldest Gruff
Skull the Troll
Skull the Troll
8 months ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/the-great-ape-taxonomy-debate/

But my point was more that Zeke clearly passing the Turing Test and is as provably sentient as humans are.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago

But has no standing in law other than as chattel or as a lethal weapon. If he did have status as an individual, he would have to be charged for as a serial killer. He could then try the ‘I was compelled’ argument, but I doubt we’d see that.

Effectively, as far as the law goes, Zeke is just a vocalizing computer program.

Skull the Troll
Skull the Troll
8 months ago
Reply to  TomB

We don’t really know that that’s true in this world. They don’t know of any other AI, but there’s all kinds of superheroes/villains and has been for a while. The courts may have adapted in some ways.

jack
jack
8 months ago
Reply to  Wesley Riot

so was data. whats your point?

Mnemnosyne
Mnemnosyne
8 months ago
Reply to  James

Yeah, would be justified, especially since there’s no legal system that’s likely to deal with Scott’s attempted murder. Not to say it would be a good idea, but it would be justified, certainly.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  Mnemnosyne

Why? Morally, two murders do not cancel each other out. Right now, we have an attempted murder (or gross negligence since Scott didn’t intend to kill him at that moment where he appeared and his bomb went off) and then if Zeke killed Scott, we’d have a murder. And regardless of morality, the law does not allow one murder to balance out another. ONLY in self-defense and Scott appears currently not presenting any threat, so it would be murder (in passion). So really, understandable, yes. Justified in the sense of ‘just desserts’ sure. But morally? Don’t think so. And legally?… Read more »

Leon
Leon
8 months ago
Reply to  James

It wouldnt solve anything

Pyre
Pyre
8 months ago
Reply to  James

Justification is a funny ol’ thing……

https://cad-comic.com/comic/analog-and-d-pad-02-22/

7eggert
7eggert
8 months ago
Reply to  James

Genesis 4:
23 Lamech said to his wives, “Adah and Zillah, listen to me; wives of Lamech, hear my words. I have killed a man for wounding me,  a young man for injuring me. 24 If Cain is avenged seven times,  then Lamech seventy-seven times.”

Mathew 18:
21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  7eggert

That has nothing to do with the law.

If Zeke is not Christian, it would hold no water for him. And we haven’t seen any sign he was.

I think we could find other passages that would justify striking down someone who harmed you in various religious texts across many religions. None pertain here.

TomB
TomB
8 months ago
Reply to  James

A legal non-person with a history as a serial killer (perhaps allegedly by compulsion but that would be hard to prove) kills a human who was trying to defend the community….

Not justified.

Even if Scott killed him successfully and he was rebuilt from plans, he still isn’t justified. One murder does not, legally, excuse another.

Would it be just? Perhaps. Would it be understandable? Sure. Legal? No. Moral? Probably not. Someone kills your best buddy, you’re not allowed to kill them. Two wrongs do not make a right.

GeorgeV
GeorgeV
8 months ago
Reply to  TomB

What history as a serial killer? (To my knowledge at least) Zeke has never killed anyone, not even in the Master’s service. The Master only built him to deal with Ethan and Lucas. You could charge him for attempted murder (while under duress), but he never got as far as an actual kill. (unless I’m forgetting an Ethan respawn somewhere, but that’s even harder to prove legally…) For all that Zeke has talked extensively about hating and wanting to kill/exterminate/subjugate/enslave all humans, he’s never actually put any of these plans into action. The closest he’s come was right after he… Read more »

Andhaka
Andhaka
8 months ago

And this is where we find out that Scott is a super powered individual with the ability to control matter on a sub atomic level with his mind.

So long Zeke. 😀

Last edited 8 months ago by Andhaka
Gonfrask
Gonfrask
8 months ago
Reply to  Andhaka

What a plot twist!!

anonymouse
anonymouse
8 months ago
Reply to  Andhaka

or we find out how fast scott can roll them wheels when a super angry robot with elite ninja skills he tried to kill comes after him. (sorry if this offends anyone, but lets be honest, unless someone can calm down zeke, or scott can roll really fast, or does have a superpower that can protect him, theres gonna be blood and bodyparts)

Jacob
Jacob
8 months ago
Reply to  anonymouse

Just because the king is in check doesn’t mean there aren’t other pieces in play. The rook still has a chance to intervene and the queen might still get through to ZK. I think we haven’t seen the endgame of this board position just yet.

Pyre
Pyre
8 months ago
Reply to  Andhaka

Or The Troll and/or The Master realize “It’s been like half a year since they even put on the costumes and much longer since they did anything meaningful” and fire an RPG at the store just as Zeke closes with Scott, resolving both the plotline as well as any future threats.

Paul
Paul
8 months ago

Here’s where Ethan offers himself instead of Scott. “Kill me.” Knowing that it hurts every time but shows he cares about Zeke.

Jaysburn
Jaysburn
8 months ago
Reply to  Paul

My guess is Ethan will try to protect Scott, Zeke will end up killing Ethan, and that will snap Zeke out of it.

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
8 months ago
Reply to  Jaysburn

The main question is, how many times will Ethan, completely unarmed, have to throw himself ahead of Zeke and take that hit? How many deaths, before Zeke learns that it’s not just wrong to die, but also wrong to kill?

OutbackJon
OutbackJon
8 months ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

Greetings Professor Falken.
Shall we play a game?

Austin Mills
Austin Mills
8 months ago

Um…Zeke’s head appears to actually be on fire in the last panel. Someone get a fire extinguisher before this somehow gets even worse.

tiamattt
tiamattt
8 months ago

Kinda crazy to think that if the Master actually did activate the bomb while Zeke was still with him all this would’ve been happening to him, and well I don’t think we’d be having a Master problem anymore.

Hmmm
Hmmm
8 months ago
Reply to  tiamattt

Except the Master didn’t smash Zeke’s head open, like Ethan did, which seems like the most likely reason the explosive’s installation would have been compromised. If damage like that had ever happened in the past, then verifying the integrity of the failsafe would have most likely been an important step in the Master’s repair process. The only reason it didn’t happen this time is because no one who was planning to use the failsafe knew about the damage Zeke sustained. If Scott learned about Zeke’s head injury, I wouldn’t be surprised if he insisted on personally checking Zeke for internal… Read more »

Phoebe
Phoebe
8 months ago

Oh Ethan, you are not doing a very good work at explaining, but then again, in this situation, being able to talk coherently at all is something…

Casra
Casra
8 months ago
Reply to  Phoebe

Since when has Ethan, in any universe, been able to explain things well under pressure?

Casra
Casra
8 months ago

I do hope the store has video and audio security recording…

sven
sven
8 months ago

I’m so bored by this whole storyline. It’s just a robot.

Playing it Safe
Playing it Safe
8 months ago
Reply to  sven

Plenty of other webcomics out there…

Skull the Troll
Skull the Troll
8 months ago
Reply to  sven

Nice troll. I award you +1 Faces.

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
8 months ago
Reply to  sven

In 2019, Zeke broke into Ethan’s apartment and kidnapped him, which was the moment that they went from “main villain” to “main character”. That shift has caused the entire focus of the strip to pull away from being about shenanigans involving being an up-and-coming superhero while balancing a personal life, to a group of heroes trying to either contain or rehabilitate a former enemy. It’s kind of obvious in retrospect – Ethan and Emily break up, just in time for Zeke to jump on as main cast. So what I’m saying is, if you’re still reading regularly over two years… Read more »

James
James
8 months ago
Reply to  sven

And yet you’re still here

omg omg
omg omg
8 months ago
Reply to  sven

Zeke is a tool to start a very deep philosophical questions inside a fantasy universe that has parallels and metaphors of our own world. It may be boring, but it is smart and deep, seriously.

Colin
Colin
8 months ago

Wow. Very VERY well written. No sensible dialogue from ZK but I felt everything there.

Colin
Colin
8 months ago
Reply to  Colin

By sensible I really meant structured sentences rather than what ZK actually articulated.

Timmeh
Timmeh
8 months ago
Reply to  Colin

With the eye color shift, what is ommited and what is said… just so good. Tim did amazing here.

PapaVanTwee
PapaVanTwee
8 months ago

Looks like we are close to figuring out who gets deposited where.

GUNnibal
GUNnibal
8 months ago
Reply to  PapaVanTwee

Reminds me of a certain methodical deportation that was mentioned once before.

anonymouse
anonymouse
8 months ago
Reply to  PapaVanTwee

…honestly i thought the title of this sequence was because of the first page where zeke witnessed ethan die from a clumsy accident, and respawn, and made a remark about depositing that video in “the ol spank bank” before asking if he was using that term right (i think we agree with ethan’s response “god i hope not”

XennethKeisere
XennethKeisere
8 months ago

Looks like Zeke is struggling to trust Ethan through the situation, but whether that’s because of the damage or because of his “feelings” of betrayal, we can’t be sure. Not yet, at least. But the fact that he’s differentiating between Ethan and Scott/Lucas is a good sign that he still WANTS to trust him.

That, or he’s so scrambled by the damage and situation that he doesn’t know who to kill first among the three, but he’s starting to figure it out based on that last panel. Better make like an Autobot and roll out, Scott!

Cron Borkins
Cron Borkins
8 months ago

Nice touch regards the game knocked off the shelf.

Jack
Jack
8 months ago

I can see this going one of two ways. First, Scott is not defenseless, he designs the tech and will be able to disable ZK which will result in Ethan repairing them in secret. Or Ethan will be able to talk down ZK before they can hurt Scott, showing even in a damaged state, ZK is willing to listen to reason.

Last edited 8 months ago by Jack
chargersfan
chargersfan
8 months ago
Reply to  Jack

It would make sense that Scott has another EMP charge equipped on his wheelchair. That is, after all, how they disabled ZK the first time.

… if he thought ahead for a layer of “personal defense”.

Playing it Safe
Playing it Safe
8 months ago

I keep waiting on the cliffhanger…

Digi
Digi
8 months ago

It is really pissed off now.

NickW
NickW
8 months ago

Really like the subtle little touch that the only game we can make out from the stack Lucas crashes into is Nier: Automata.

Very clever link between the game story and this one…

Skull the Troll
Skull the Troll
8 months ago

I know he’s the one that caused
all this, but Scott looks very small and helpless there in the last panel. I hope Zeke sees that too and stops themselves.

Last edited 8 months ago by Skull the Troll
The Riddler
The Riddler
8 months ago

I think it’s possible to see where this will ultimately go. The opening of this arc gave a peek at the topic of death and pain. Zeke was able to show a bit of empathy to Ethan when hearing his explanation about how death hurt every time, how he remembered each one, and the fear/suffering associated with it. Now Zeke is having a near-death experience and so to a lesser extent ZK is having their own brush with their own mortality. It is causing Zeke to experience fear. For Ethan his power by his own admission takes some of that… Read more »

Last edited 8 months ago by The Riddler
foducool
foducool
8 months ago

ETH compromised, must increase stock value

Jennible
Jennible
8 months ago

The direction i want this story to take is that of tragedy, One in which Zeke kills Scott, then Lucas and Ethan have to put him down because they made him into the danger to humanity that Scott claimed he was. The guilt of responsibilties hanging heavy between them and unspoken.

FITCamaro
FITCamaro
8 months ago

Guess we’ll see if Scott put in a voice command to override Zeke’s motor controls.

Zeke wants his revenge!

Namefield
Namefield
8 months ago
Muppet
Muppet
8 months ago

Scott is the true master and needs to die. Might as well call him Mr.Glass’es at this point.

Whatever
Whatever
8 months ago

Well, at least it wasn’t a water balloon this time…

Rolan7
Rolan7
8 months ago

I winced at the quote from the Master. ZK, gradually testing boundaries, has been punished- and the words of their abuser are part of their panicked stream of consciousness.

DontBeThatGuy
DontBeThatGuy
8 months ago

It hurts to see Zeke like this. He’s so messed up, nothing makes sense anymore. I’m just hoping this is where Scott atones and gets Zeke calm enough to get repairs done. I also hope Scott is finally aware of what his duplicity has caused in all this.

Sinnirr
Sinnirr
8 months ago

I’m thinking Scott needs a clean diaper about now…

XScimmia
XScimmia
8 months ago

I think Scott is the Master.

omg omg
omg omg
8 months ago

I loved the philosophical repercutions of this “Zeke’s Arc”. Personally, I agree with Scott: the priority is keeping the humans safe, because this is our planet and we make moral and values in our own terms. Also, Lucas and Ethan are Scott’s loved ones, so the emotional human side wins here.
I also love to see more of Scott, he is my favorite character by far 🙂